Act of instability

by
October 2007, no. 295
Buy this book

Forgotten Wars: The end of Britain's Asian emprie by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper

Allen Lane, $59.95 hb, 704 pp

Act of instability

by
October 2007, no. 295

Notwithstanding the old adage, you can tell a certain amount about a book by its cover, especially if it has two covers, each displaying a different subtitle. The British edition of Forgotten Wars, on sale in Australian bookshops, has the subtitle ‘The End of Britain’s Asian Empire’. The cover photograph shows Lord Louis Mountbatten, in spotless white naval uniform, inspecting a guard of honour of Burmese soldiers in 1948. The soldiers appear smart and loyal, while the Burmese civilian accompanying Mountbatten is deferential. The American edition of the book, published under the Belknap Press imprint of Harvard University Press, has the less precise but more evocative subtitle ‘Freedom and Revolution in Southeast Asia’, and a cover with a blurred photograph of a truckload of Asians celebrating ‘Independence Day’. The caption identifies neither the country nor the date, but a likely candidate would be India in 1947.

Peter Edwards reviews 'Forgotten Wars: The end of Britain's Asian empire' by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper

Forgotten Wars: The end of Britain's Asian emprie

by Christopher Bayly and Tim Harper

Allen Lane, $59.95 hb, 704 pp

Buy this book

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